About

Pushing the bar! 

 – Toby Colombé  (GWO Founder and Organiser)

2022 will mark the 8th GIN Wide Open!

Based on the number of applicants over the last few years, it has become the most popular paragliding competition in the world! and many pilots comment that the GWO is getting better every year.

That’s a lot to live up to!  But, I’m convinced that with this year’s venue and organisation team, we’ll once again be raising the bar.

2020 and 2021 has of courses been a particularly challenging time for the paragliding community at large so we’re extra motivated to celebrate the freedom and adventure of paragliding in 2022

I myself started competing 20 years ago.  Competing taught me more about XC flying than any trip ever could; and whilst it was an incredibly educational experience, the atmosphere could sometimes be tense (some pilots can get very competitive!)

I wanted to create something new: a competition environment where the emphasis was less about the results and much more focused on fun and learning.  It’s proved to be an immensely popular concept.

More an event than a competition

The GWO has grown from its early days into much more than a paragliding competition.  Indeed, with the daily talks, briefings and de-briefings, not to mention the parties and prizes, it’s really much more of an event than a competition.

The GWO is less about flying the latest hot ships and more about flying achievable tasks.  Whilst the parameters for many competitions mean that tasks are set with the objective to have only 20% of the pilots in goal, at the GWO we’d really like as many pilots in goal as possible (90% on a 50km task is not unheard of!).  Rather than setting tasks so challenging that only the two-liner-gang have a chance of making goal, we set tasks with you in mind.  That means that even if you’re flying an EN-A glider you can still make goal!

More about having fun:

The GWO is designed to be stress-free.  That’s why we have lots of marshals on launch to help, a selection of the friendliest and most approachable top GIN pilots, an emphasis on safety. Everything taken care of!  All you need to do is concentrate on flying and having fun.

At the GWO we emphasise fun and learning.  That’s why we have lectures on things like how to use your GPS, and before each and every task we’ll be sharing all the local knowledge to give you every chance of completing the task.  At the end of each day, we’ll also have in-depth task debriefs so you can learn even more.

It’s nothing to do with your results!   It’s well-known that the prizes at the GWO are bigger and better than any other paragliding competition, but what makes this competition so extraordinary is how they are dished out.  It’s nothing to do with your results!

By just participating, you’ll have the same chance of winning a wing, a harness, a new reserve, a GPS, a holiday etc. as any other pilot.

Even if “competing” is not your thing, if you’re looking for a fun-filled and relaxed week with lots of flying, an emphasis on safety and ample opportunity to learn from some of the best pilots in the world, not to mention a great social environment, this could be your ideal flying week.

Once again, this year we’ve got some big parties planned so no matter how well you fly (or don’t) you can “swing your pants” into the early hours!  After all, this is THE fun comp!

More about the GIN Wide Open

History

The concept for the GIN Wide Open came about as a result of a campfire discussion between Toby Colombé (Passion Paragliding) and some friends in 2012.  The first GWO was held in 2013.  GIN have been the main sponsor from the start, supporting the event, not only with prizes, but also by sending their top team pilots to lend a hand – and inspire!

Number of participants:

125 pilots from all over the world

Entry fee:

310 Euros includes:  7days of potential flying (not six like most other “fun comps”!); all transport and retrieves; Live-Tracking for your safety;  high quality GWO-T-shirt; Daily talks and de-briefs; TWO parties with food; Daily lunch packs (Good ones!);  Higher value and more prizes than ANY OTHER competition, including entry to the legendary GIN Wide Open Prize Draw.

FAI Cat 2 Event

The GWO is an FAI Category 2 sanctioned event and will be run accordingly.  All pilots must comply with the appropriate rules.

Pilot Registration and Selection:

2020 and 2021 Events Postponed:  Due to the Covid-19 Crisis we were forced to postpone both the 2020 and 2021 events.  Any selected pilot that requested a refund received a full up until 31 October 2021. By the end of December 2021 we are expecting to offer a few additional  places to pilots.

All selection communications will be by email.